SGS Tuition Fee Exemption

Graduate students who were registered in their current program prior to March 2020 may request an exemption from tuition for up to two sessions if their academic program was disrupted due to COVID-19. Students will still be charged non-tuition ancillary, incidental fees and system access fees that are associated with the registration session.

Note: The School of Graduate Studies Tuition Fee Exemption will continue to be offered to eligible students in 2023-24 and in future years. It is recommended that students apply for the exemption immediately after exiting the funded cohort in order to pair it with a PCA, which is available in the first two sessions of registration immediately after exiting the funded cohort.


To be eligible for a Tuition Fee Exemption, the following criteria must be met:

  1. The student was registered during or before the winter 2020 session and was making good progress with the thesis/dissertation prior to March 2020 and data collection or access to necessary sources was significantly impeded due to pandemic-related impacts. This disruption will have been documented using the COVID-19 mentoring record distributed in 2020.
  2. Additional work is needed before the thesis/dissertation can be defended or the major research paper is completed.
  3. The revised research plan requires an additional session of registration.
  4. The student will be outside the funded cohort and will receive little or no other funding towards tuition charged in the session for which they are applying for an exemption. 
  5. The supervisor agrees that conditions (1) through (4) have been met.
  6. The unit confirms that the student is applying for a first or second Tuition Fee Exemption.
  7. The Graduate Chair or Coordinator of the student’s home graduate unit agrees that conditions (1) through (6) have been met and provides departmental approval.

Students should contact their graduate unit for help with questions about eligibility.

Requesting a Tuition Fee Exemption

Registration with tuition exemption is available for students who meet the criteria identified above. Students should submit their request in the academic session for which they are seeking tuition fee exemption. Applications must be received by the SGS Registration Deadlines:

  • Fall 2023: September 15, 2023
  • Winter 2024: January 12, 2024

Students will initiate a request to register with a fee exemption by completing the SGS Register with Tuition Fee Exemption on Basis of Progress Delays due to COVID-19 form and submitting it to their graduate unit.

The student will be charged mandatory non-tuition fees, such as incidental, ancillary, and system access fees. The student may apply for an A&S COVID-19 Program Completion Award to assist with these costs.